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Ken Paul, Richard Talsma join Furniture First board

HIGH POINT — Furniture First buying group elected new board members Ken Paul of FrontRoom Furnishings in Columbus, Ohio, and Richard Talsma of Talsma Furniture in Hudsonville, Mich., to two-year terms during the group's general membership and annual meeting at the High Point Market.

Retiring board members are Larry Schneiderman, Schneiderman's Furniture, Lakeville, Minn., and Jeff Winter, Discovery Furniture, Topeka, Kan. They were presented with plaques recognizing their contributions and service to the group.

Outgoing Chairman Larry Smith of Smith Home Furnishings in Ponca City, Okla., also received a plaque for his service during his 2011-2013 tenure. He will continue to serve on the board.

Furniture First officers for 2013-2014 were selected May 2 at the most recent board meeting of the Harrisburg, Pa.-based buying group. They are Chairman Mike Kordik, Mike's Furniture in Joliet, Ill.; Vice Chairman Art Scholet, Scholet Furniture, Oneonta, N.Y.; Secretary Chris Cooley, Michael Alan Furnishings, Lake Havasu City, Ariz.; and Beth Barnes of FurnitureLand in Delmar, Del., who was re-elected treasurer.

Current board members with one-year terms remaining include Barnes, Kordik and Smith along with Russell Blocker, Blocker's Furniture, Ocala, Fla.; Randy Coconis, Coconis Furniture, South Zanesville, Ohio; and Steve Kloss, The Tin Shed, Highland, Ill.

Current board members with two year terms remaining include Cooley, Scholet and Nick Cardi, Cardi's Furniture, Swansea, Mass.

Coconis, a member since 1998, also was honored a National Home Furnishings Assn. Retailer of the Year at an industry awards gala during the High Point Market. He's a past treasurer of the Ohio Home Furnishings Assn. and serves on the board of the new North American Home Furnishings Assn.

Furniture First has 202 retailer members with 421 stores doing an estimated $1.6 billion in annual sales.

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